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As the global economy rebounds from the devastating impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, there are fears that a surge in demand could lead to the return of high inflation that could threaten many businesses and savings.
Commodities prices have risen sharply over the past six months, with growing demand for materials outpacing the capacity of Covid-disrupted supply chains.
The price of a barrel of Brent crude oil tripled from $17 a barrel on 20 April 2020 to about $51 a barrel at the end of the year. In mid-2021, it sits above $70 a barrel.
Other commodities including natural gas, iron ore, aluminium and copper have experienced similar trajectories.
A lack of investment in production capacity over the past year, combined with better-than-expected economic recovery in China, are the primary reasons for the commodities price surge. But the rise in liquidity from economic stimulus measures and monetary easing is also a key contributor, pushing up asset prices and consumer spending.
Our latest edition also features a special industry report on the GCC real estate market, and finds that, after five years of doom and gloom, property prices in Dubai – widely regarded as the region’s bellwether property market – finally started to rebound this year.
The renewed positivity for Dubai real estate, coupled with ongoing increases in home ownership rates in Saudi Arabia, mean that for the first time in half a decade, the GCC real estate market has reasons to be positive.
This month's 20-page Market Focus offers an exclusive look at the Levant region, where the news is not so good. Lebanon is seeing the breakdown of law and order while Syria has slipped further from peace. Jordan, meanwhile, has had its own imperilled year.
Must-read sections in the July 2021 edition of MEED Business Review include:
• The spectre of inflation looms
• Facing the threat of a super cycle
• End in sight for oil dominance
• The quandary of oil hitting $100 a barrel
• Inflationary pressures in the region grow
> INDUSTRY REPORT: GCC real estate shows signs of rebounding
> LEADERSHIP: Investor relations must champion rise of ESG
> GULF PROJECTS INDEX: Gulf projects market valued at $3.4tn
> MAY 2021 CONTRACT AWARDS: Awards drop as Saudi Arabia’s total shrinks
> BUSINESS OUTLOOK: Finance, oil and gas, construction, power and water contracts
We hope you enjoy the July 2021 edition of MEED Business Review.
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